Today is Wednesday, Dec. 25, the 359th day of 2013. There are six days left in the year. This is Christmas Day.
On this date in:
A.D. 336: The first recorded celebration of Christmas on Dec. 25 takes place in Rome.
1066: William the Conqueror is crowned king of England.
1776: Gen. George Washington and his troops cross the Delaware River for a surprise attack against Hessian forces at Trenton, N.J.
1818: “Silent Night (Stille Nacht),” written by Franz Gruber and Father Joseph Mohr, is publicly performed for the first time during the Christmas Midnight Mass at the Church of St. Nikolaus in Oberndorf, Austria.
1868: President Andrew Johnson grants an unconditional pardon to all persons involved in the Southern rebellion that resulted in the Civil War.
1926: Hirohito becomes emperor of Japan, succeeding his father, Emperor Yoshihito.
1931: New York’s Metropolitan Opera broadcasts an entire live opera over radio for the first time: “Hansel and Gretel” by Engelbert Humperdinck.
1988: There was no Christmas Eve miracle in Cleveland for 75,000 fans who came to see the Cleveland Browns beat the Houston Oilers in an AFC Wild Card game. The Browns scored three second half touchdowns in a comeback bid, but fell short, 24-23.
Part-time members of U.S. Rep. James A. Traficant Jr.’s staff defend their unstructured work hours, saying they do whatever they are told to do by Traficant or his top aides whenever their services are required. They say that is consistent with provisions of the House Ethics Manual that states, “no formal job descriptions exist for those on the (payroll) of a member.”
Neil T. Necastro Jr., a senior at Cardinal Mooney High, wins the district competition of the 42nd annual Voice of Democracy Speech Program sponsored by the VFW.
1973: From an economic standpoint, most of the Youngstown district’s 600,000 residents are enjoying one of the merriest and most prosperous Christmases on record, writes Vindicator Business Editor George R. Reiss.
Ohio Gov. John J. Gilligan appoints Irvin H. Ryan of Youngstown, retired staff representative for the United Steelworkers of America, to the newly created Ohio Commission on Aging.
Advertisement: At Powers Auditorium, four performances of “The Nutcracker,” with the Ballet Western Reserve, Michael Falotico, director, and the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra, Franz Bibo, conductor.
1963: Although they can’t be home for the holidays, patients in Youngstown area hospitals and local correctional institutions are served a traditional Christmas dinner of turkey and all the trimmings.
Wendell Wilkie Harris, a graduate of East High School and Youngstown University, will begin a two-year assignment as a Peace Corps volunteer in Jamaica.
The accidental deaths of three Mahoning County men in a week from carbon monoxide while working on their cars in garages bring a warning from Dr. David A. Belinky, Mahoning County coroner: Carbon monoxide can quickly overcome an unsuspecting person.
1938: Three members of a Boardman family, making final plans for Christmas, are burned by a kerosene explosion that gutted their home. Mrs. Ervin Rice, 32, is in South Side Hospital; her husband and 2-year-old daughter, Dolores, were released after treatment.
Christmas Eve, falling on a Saturday, brings a flurry of last-minute shoppers that astonishes even seasoned downtown store executives.
Dimes displayed on a giant board in front of the Union National Bank fall short of the 5,280-foot goal, but total $1,400, which will be turned over to the Christmas seal fund to fight tuberculosis.